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This Mornings Meditation

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51default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Mon May 19, 2008 7:42 am

Pamela

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Daniel and His Friends Stand Before a Great King
Daniel 1
IN THE KING'S palace at Babylon a company of young boys were being entertained. These young lads were strangers in Babylon. But there were not strangers in a king's court, for they had lived in a royal palace in their home country.


Among this company were four bright-eyed, handsome youths who seemed to be more thoughtful than their friends. These boys were Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, and they had come from Jerusalem with the first captives whom Nebuchadnezzar had carried away from Judah.

They have been princes in Judah during the rule of King Jehoiakim, and they served the God of Israel.

King Nebuchadnezzar had commanded his chief officer of the palace to choose this company of young boys and to teach them the learning of the Chaldeans. He wished to have them well trained, that when they should become grown men they might be able to help rule the great kingdom of Babylon.

And he had appointed his servants to carry choice food from his own table to set before them every day, that they might eat of it and grow into sturdy manhood.

Now, Daniel and his three friends wished to keep the law that God gave to the people of Israel; and that law forbade them to eat of certain kinds of food. But the heathen nations, like the Chaldeans, had no regard for that law, and they prepared food that the Jews called unclean.

They also cooked their food in certain ways that the law of Moses condemned. Daniel and his three friends knew about these differences between the Chaldeans and their own people. And they decided to refuse the King's food, lest it should be the kind of food that Moses in his book had forbidden the Israelites to eat.

God knew about the desire of Daniel and his friends. And God caused the chief officer of the King's palace to love these young boys. When the food was brought before them from the King's table, Daniel stood up and bravely told the officer about his desire not to eat of that food, lest he should be breaking the law of his God.

He also pleaded for his three friends, Hananiah, Mishael, Azariah, that they, too, might be allowed to refuse the King's food.

At first the officer was afraid that the King might be displeased if the boys refused to eat food from his table.

He said, "When you appear before Nebuchadnezzar and he sees, that you are not looking so well and strong as the other young boys, then he will think that I have not cared for you as I should have done. And he will kill me."

But Daniel said, "Try us for ten days with the kind of food we desire to eat, and then see if we do not look as well fed as the other young men."

Because the officer loved these boys he agreed to do as Daniel had asked. And for ten days he fed them vegetable food and bread instead of the meats and wine from the King's table.

At the end of the ten days the officer saw that Daniel and his friends were even healthier-looking than their companions. So he continued to give them the food that they desired. And God blessed these boys with much wisdom, so that they quickly learned the language and the wisdom of the Chaldeans.

When three years had passed the King requested that the young boys should be brought before him. He examined them with hard questions, and he saw that Daniel and his three friends were wiser by ten times than were any of the wisest men in all his kingdom.
Nebuchadnezzar was well pleased with these young Jews. He gave them places of honor among his own people, and they continued to live in Babylon for many years.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

52default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Tue May 20, 2008 7:48 am

Pamela

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Daniel in Babylon, and Nebuchadnezzar's Dream
Daniel 2
AFTER YOUNG DANIEL and his free friends were numbered among the wise men in Babylon, one night the King had a very strange dream.


When he awoke from the dream he could not go to sleep again. And the dream troubled him greatly. He believed that surely that dream must have a deep meaning, and he decided to call the wise men in his kingdom and have them explain the meaning to him.

Morning came at last, and Nebuchadnezzar arose from his bed. But now he could no longer recall his dream. This fact troubled him, too, for he knew the dream had been strange and he believed it had a deep meaning.

He sent at once for the wise men who had often stood before him, and when they came he told them about his troubled thoughts regarding the strange dream which he could no longer remember. He asked them to tell the dream and the meaning of it.

The wise men were puzzled at this request from their King. They thought he was being unreasonable, for they did not know what he had dreamed about. So they asked him to tell the dream first, and then they would tell the meaning.

"I have forgotten the dream," replied the King, impatiently, "and if you are as wise as you claim to be you can tell me what it was. Then you can tell its meaning."

When the wise men insisted that no human being could do such a thing as tell what some one else had dreamed and forgotten, the King became very angry with them.

He said, "Unless you tell this dream and its meaning you shall all be killed."

Even this cruel threat could not enable the wise men to know the dream, so they turned away from his presence in great fear.

Nebuchadnezzar then called the captain of his guard and commanded him to kill all the wise men in Babylon. So Arioch, the captain, took his sword and prepared himself to do the terrible deed.

When he came to Daniel's house he found that the brave young man and his three friends had heard nothing about the the King's command. They had not appeared with the other wise men before Nebuchadnezzar.

When Daniel heard what had happened he begged the captain to delay the cruel work until he might first speak with the King. Then he hurried to the palace and went boldly in to tell Nebuchadnezzar that he would find out the dream and its interpretation if only a little time were given him to prepare. And Nebuchadnezzar granted him a little time.

Daniel knew that no living person could be wise enough in himself to do what the King had required; but Daniel knew also that secret things are known by the great God of all the earth, whom he and his three friends were serving.

So the four young men prayed very earnestly that God would cause Daniel to know his dream, and that night God showed Daniel in a vision what the dream had been and what it meant.

Now Daniel was very thankful to God. He knelt down and prayed a beautiful prayer of thanksgiving.

Then he went quickly to Arioch, the captain of the King's guard, and said, "Do not destroy the wise men, but bring me in to speak with the King; for I can tell the interpretation of his dream."

Arioch was glad, and he took Daniel and brought him to the palace. Then he told the King that he had found a man among the captives from Judah who could make known the strange dream and its meaning.

Daniel told Nebuchadnezzar that the power to make know his dream was given by the great God in heaven, for no wise man of earth could know such secret and reveal them.

Then he said: "O King, when you lay down to sleep on your bed you wondered what should come to pass in future years. Then you fell asleep, and in your dream God showed you what would happen hereafter. And this was your dream: You saw a great image, exceedingly bright, standing before you. The head of this image was of gold, the breast and arms were of silver, and the waist and hips were of brass, the legs were of iron, and the feet were part of iron and part of clay.

Then you saw a stone that was cut without hands roll toward this great image and strike the feet of it. And the stone broke the feet, and the whole image fell to the ground in broken pieces, and it became like dust, which the wind can blow away. Then while you looked in wonder, the stone grew until it became a great mountain, which filled the whole earth."

Nebuchadnezzar listened eagerly to the young man's words. Then Daniel continued:

"Now I will tell you what this dream means, for God intends to teach you something by it. This great image represents four great kingdoms of earth. Your kingdom is the first, and the head of gold represents this kingdom.

After you there will come another king not so great, and he is like the breast and arms of silver. The third kingdom is shown in the dream by the parts of brass, and the fourth by the iron legs and the feet. This fourth kingdom will be very strong at first, but afterwards it will become weaker; for the iron in the feet was mixed with clay.

"In the days of these kings," said Daniel, "God will set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed, and his kingdom is represented in your dream by that stone cut out without hands, which smote the great image till it fell.

God's kingdom will increase until it fills the whole earth, and it will break in pieces every other kingdom. This, O King, was your dream, and this is the meaning of it."

Nebuchadnezzar was astonished at the wisdom of this young Jew. He believed that Daniel was a wonderful person, like a god, and he fell on the floor before Daniel to worship him.

But Daniel had told him that the God in heaven had made known the dream and the meaning to him, so Nebuchadnezzar said, "Of a truth, your God is a God of gods, and a Lord of kings, and a revealer of secrets."

Then Nebuchadnezzar gave many great gifts to Daniel, and made him the ruler of all the province of Babylon, and the chief of all the wise men in his kingdom. He did not allow his captain to destroy the wise men, after Daniel had revealed the meaning of his dream.
At Daniel's request the King placed Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah in honorable offices of the province, among the governors of the land. And the names of these young men were known to the King as Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

53default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Wed May 21, 2008 7:34 am

Pamela

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Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the Fiery Furnace
Daniel 3

NEBUCHADNEZZAR, THE king, grew in power until he became the greatest king in the world at that time. Year after year he added new countries to his kingdom, and in every country the people feared him greatly. These things caused him to become very proud, and to think himself a wonderful man indeed.


Then Nebuchadnezzar decided to make a god and compel the people of every country to worship that god. So he built a great image, ninety feet high, and covered it with gold. This image he set up on the plain of Dura, which was near Babylon. There it could be seen at a great distance.

After the image had been set up, the King sent a command to the princes and rulers and officers in every nation, that they should come to the great gathering on the plain of Dura. And they dared not disobey. When they came together, Shadrach, Meshach, Abednego, Daniel's three friends, were among them. For some reason Daniel himself was not there.

King Nebuchadnezzar was pleased to see such a vast company of men assembled on the plain before the image.

He wished to have every one of them bow down and worship the god that he had made, so he caused one of his servants to cry out in a loud voice and say: "O people, nations, and languages, to you it is commanded that when the sound of music is heard you must fall down upon your knees before this great image of gold, which the King has set up. But if you refuse to fall down and worship the image, then you shall be thrown into a furnace of fire."

Soon afterwards the music began to play, and the people feel down on their knees, trembling in fear of the great King who had given such a stern command. All the people except three men bowed with their faces to the ground. These three stood up boldly, and would not kneel at all. They were Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.

Because Nebuchadnezzar had given these young men positions of honor in the kingdom, some of the Chaldeans were jealous of them.

And now these jealous Chaldeans watched to see if Daniel's friends would kneel before the image. When they saw the young men standing bravely alone among all the kneeling princes and nobles, they hurried to tell Nebuchadnezzar.

And Nebuchadnezzar was surprised to hear that these men had dared to disobey his command. He knew they were good rulers, and he did not wish to destroy them in the furnace of fire. He thought perhaps they might have misunderstood, so he sent for them at once, and told them that he would give them another chance to obey.

But they bravely answered: "O King, we will not accept another chance. We will not bow before your image, for we will not worship any god except the one true God. And our God is so great that he can deliver us from the fiery furnace that you have prepared. But even if he will not deliver us from any such a death, we will not worship any other god."

Nebuchadnezzar could not understand why these Jews should refuse to worship the image, and he was very angry indeed. He believed these young men were too stubborn to obey him, and he no longer wished to spare their lives from the cruel furnace.

He commanded his servants to throw more fuel into the fire and make it seven times hotter than it had been before. Then he called the mightiest men of his army and gave them orders to bind stout cords around Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and throw them like pieces of wood into the fire.

But Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were not afraid. They stood quietly while the mighty men wound the cords tightly around their bodies, and they did not cry out when the men picked them up and threw them into the furnace. But the flames leaped out of the furnace door and killed the mighty soldiers who carried them to the place of burning.

Nebuchadnezzar sat in his royal chair near by, watching. He saw the flames leap out and burn the soldiers to death. He saw Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego fall, bound hand and foot, into the fire.

Then his eyes grew wide in surprise; for he saw the three men who had dared to disobey his command rise up and walk about in the fire with no cords to hinder them. And another Person, one who looked to the astonished King like a god, was walking about with them in the furnace.

At first Nebuchadnezzar refused to believe his own eyes. He called to the nobles who stood near his chair and asked, "Did we not cast only three men into the fire?"

They replied, "True, O King."

"But now I see four men, unbound and walking freely about in the midst of the awful flame!" he cried out. "They seem to have no hurt and the fourth one is like a god."

Now Nebuchadnezzar rose from his royal chair in haste and ran to the door of the furnace. He called loudly to the three men and said, "Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, ye servants of the Most High God, come forth! and come to me at once!"

The princes and nobles and rulers of the kingdom gathered around in amazement to see these three men walk out of the fire and come before Nebuchadnezzar. And they saw that the fire had not harmed these Jews at all.

Not even had their hair been singed by the flames, and the smell of fire was not noticed on their garments. But the stout cords that the soldiers had wrapped tightly around them before throwing them into the furnace had been burned to ashes.

Nebuchadnezzar was no longer angry with Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. Now he believed they were great men, and he wished to honor them. He knew they served a great God, one who could do miracles, and he blessed the God of the Jews.

He said to all the people, "Now I shall make another commandment, that no man in all my kingdom shall speak one word against the God of these brave men."
And after this Nebuchadnezzar set these men up in higher places in his kingdom.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

54default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Thu May 22, 2008 7:53 am

Pamela

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God Humbles the Proud Heart of Nebuchadnezzar
Daniel 4
ONE NIGHT WHILE Nebuchadnezzar lay asleep in his palace, God caused him to have another strange dream. This time when he awoke in the morning he remembered what the dream had been, and he wondered about its meaning. So he sent again for the wise Chaldeans, and told them about the dream that was troubling his mind.


The Chaldeans were glad because Nebuchadnezzar had remembered his dream; but when they listened to it they could not tell its meaning. So the King sent them away and called for Daniel. He believed that the spirit of Daniel's God dwelt in Daniel and caused him to understand the deepest mysteries. And he called Daniel the master of all his wise men.

Daniel listened while Nebuchadnezzar told the dream that was troubling him. And God caused Daniel to understand what the dream meant. But at first he was afraid to tell the King. For a whole hour he sat quietly, wondering that he should do.

Then Nebuchadnezzar said, "Do not be afraid, nor let the dream or its meaning trouble you." So Daniel took courage and spoke to the great ruler.

Now, the dream had been this: Nebuchadnezzar had seen a tree grow up in the earth and become so great that the top of it reached to the sky. Underneath its branches all the beasts of the field found shelter, and in its leafy boughs all the bird of the air made their nests.

And the people of the earth from the near and far came to eat of its fruit. Then Nebuchadnezzar had seen the Lord come down from heaven and cry out: "Cut down the great tree; cut off its branches, shake off its leaves, and scatter its fruit. Let the beasts get away from under the shadow of it, and let the dew come upon it for seven years.

But let the stump of the great tree remain with its roots in the ground until the seven years be passed. Let this be, that all who live may know there is a God in heaven who rules over all the kingdoms of earth."

Daniel knew the dream was sent as a warning from God to the proud King. He knew Nebuchadnezzar was not willing to believe in the great God, who is over all.

But he spoke bravely and said, "This great tree which you have seen means you, for you have become a great king and you are known in every part of the land. And the meaning of that voice which you heard crying out that the great tree should be cut down is that you shall lose your kingdom for seven years and go out from men to live among the beasts of the field.

You shall eat grass like an ox, and the dew of heaven shall be upon you. But when you humble yourself and believe that the Most High God rules in the kingdoms of earth, giving them to whomever he pleases, then you shall return again to live among men and be restored to your kingdom."

Daniel knew that God is very merciful, and he believed that God would save the King from such severe punishment if only the King would quit his sins and do right. So he urged Nebuchadnezzar to turn away from his wicked doings and begin to live differently. Then he went back to his own house.

One year passed by, and nothing unusual happened. Perhaps Nebuchadnezzar almost forgot the strange dream, at least he did not try to do as Daniel had urged him to do.

He saw about him all the splendors of his kingdom and all the beauties of his palace grounds. He saw the famous city of Babylon, which he had helped to beautify, and his heart grew more proud and haughty.

Then one day as he walked about in his kingly palace, admiring the grandeur of his surroundings, he said, "Is not this great Babylon, which I have built for my own royal house by my own power and for my glory?"

And while he spoke the words a voice called him from heaven, saying, "O King Nebuchadnezzar to you it is spoken: The Kingdom is taken from you.!"

In that very hour the great king lost his mind and became like a wild beast. And the people were afraid of him, and they drove him out of the city. There he lived in the fields and ate grass like the oxen.

And his hair grew like eagle's feathers and his nails grew like claws. For seven years he roamed about in the fields, with a heart like a beast's instead of a man's. Then God allowed his mind to return again, and his heart to become like a man's heart, and Nebuchadnezzar rose up like a man and thanked God for his mercies, and praised him for his greatness.

When the people of Babylon saw that their King had returned again to their city with the mind of a well man, they welcomed him back.
And they honored him as their king just as they had done before. But Nebuchadnezzar did not forget the lesson that God taught him, and he no longer believed that his greatness and his glory had come by his own strength.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

55default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Fri May 23, 2008 7:38 am

Pamela

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The Strange Handwriting on the Wall of the Palace
Daniel 5
A GREAT FEAST was being held in the palace of Babylon. The king, Belshazzar , had invited a thousand princes and nobles to enjoy the feast with him and his many wives. And the palace was ringing with their voices and laughter and song.


Presently, while they were drinking wine together, the King remembered the beautiful vessels of gold that Nebuchadnezzar had brought from the temple of the Lord, in Jerusalem

He commanded his servants to bring the vessels into the palace, that he and his company might drink wine from them. And the vessels were brought, and the King commanded that they be filled with wine and passed among the guests, Then, as they drank from the golden vessels they praised the gods of gold, and of silver, and of wood, and of stone.

Belshazzar's heart was merry, and he felt very secure and happy in his palace-home among his guests. He joined with them in praising the gods of gold, silver, wood, and stone.

Then suddenly he turned pale, and the gladness died out of his heart. A great fear swept over him, and caused his knees to tremble. For there on the wall of the palace, over near the candlestick, he saw the fingers of a man's hand writing strange words, which he could not read.

All at once everything grew quiet in the banquet-hall.. And everybody became afraid, for no one could understand the strange words that the hand had written.

Then the King commanded that the wise Chaldeans be brought in at once; for he thought they might be able to read the words and tell their meaning. He promised to give a rich reward to the one who could do this; but none of the Chaldeans were able to earn that reward. They could not read the writing on the wall.

News of the strange handwriting spread rapidly through the palace, and soon the old Queen Mother heard about it. She heard, to, that the wise men could not read the writing nor tell its meaning.

So she came into the banquet-hall, where the King sat trembling among his frightened guests.

And she said, "O King, there is in this city a very wise man whom you have quite forgotten. In the days of Nebuchadnezzar, the king, this man was the master of all the king's wise men, for the spirit of the gods dwells in him. Now send for him, and he will tell you the meaning of this strange handwriting on the wall."

Daniel was now an old man. For a long time he had lived quietly in Babylon, for the kings who followed Nebuchadnezzar had not set him up to places of honor in the kingdom. And he was almost forgotten.

The Queen Mother, however, remembered how he had interpreted the dreams of Nebuchadnezzar, and she knew that his wisdom was greater than any of the wisdom of the Chaldeans.

Belshazzar sent in haste for Daniel, and when the old man came before him he asked, excitedly, "Are you that Daniel whom my fathers brought out of the land of the Jews?"

Daniel replied that he was, and the King said, "I have heard of you, that the spirit of the gods dwells with you and enables you to understand deep mysteries. Now, if you can read the writing upon the wall and tell its meaning, I will cause you to be dressed in royal garments, and will make you the third ruler in this kingdom."

Daniel did not care for the honors of the Babylonian kingdom. He did not care for the beautiful, kingly robes, and he told the King to give those gifts to someone else. But he said, "I will read the writing, and will cause you to understand its meaning."

First Daniel reminded Belshazzar of great punishment that God had sent upon Nebuchadnezzar because of his wickedness and pride. Belshazzar had known about this, yet he had dared to be proud and to despise the God of heaven and earth.

He had dared to use the vessels that belonged in the Lord's house, in Jerusalem, for drinking wine, and he and his guests had praised the gods of gold and of silver and of wood and of stone, which can not see nor hear.

Daniel told Belshazzar about these things, and then he said, "Because you did these things, God sent his hand to write upon the wall of your banquet-room, that you might see it and become afraid. The words that this hand has written are Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin, and they mean this:
"Mene; God has numbered your kingdom and finished it.
"Tekel; you are weighed in the balances and found wanting.
"Upharsin; your kingdom is divided, and is given to the Medes and Persians."


Belshazzar commanded his servants to bring a royal garment and put it on Daniel, then he fastened a gold chain about Daniel's neck and proclaimed before all the guests that Daniel was the third ruler in the kingdom.
But that very night the kingdom of Babylon was destroyed; for the Medes and Persians came into the city and killed Belshazzar, and placed the Median king Darius upon the throne.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

56default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Sat May 24, 2008 6:03 pm

Pamela

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Daniel's Angel Visitor
Daniel 8-12

DANIEL HAD LIVED many years in the beautiful capital cities of the eastern kings, and he had helped these kings rule the people. But during those many years (for he was now old) he had never forgotten his childhood home in Jerusalem nor the temple of the Lord, which Nebuchadnezzar and his soldiers had destroyed.


Daniel had read the letters that Jeremiah the prophet had written to the captive Jews in Babylon, and he knew Jeremiah had prophesied that the Jews might return again to their own land after seventy years.

And now, when he was an old man, Daniel knew the seventy years would soon be passed, and he longed to see his people return again and rebuild the temple of the Lord in Jerusalem.

Instead of praying three times everyday for himself and for his people, now Daniel sometimes prayed all day long. Sometimes he refused to eat his food because he wished to have more time to spend alone, talking with God.

And he even dressed himself in sackcloth and sat in ashes when he prayed, to show God that he was very sorry for his sins and for the sins of his people.

And Daniel's earnest prayers were heard. One evening while he was praying an angel came to talk with him. This angel had come one time before, when God had caused Daniel to see a wonderful vision; but this time the angel came to comfort Daniel to see a wonderful vision; but this time the angel came to comfort Daniel.

He said, "O Daniel, you are a man greatly loved by the Lord, and you shall know what shall come to pass in after years."

And the angel told Daniel about the coming of the Savior, Jesus Christ, who should suffer and die for the sins of the people.

Daniel, after he became a very old man, continued to do business for the King. And when Darius died, the new King, Cyrus, took Daniel to his capital city in Persia and kept him there for a helper. And Daniel continued to pray earnestly even while he did business for the new King.

One day during the rule of king Cyrus, Daniel and several companions were by the riverside when all at once Daniel saw a heavenly visitor stand before him. The face of this heavenly visitor shone like lightning and his eyes like fire.

Even his arms and his feet shone like polished brass. Daniel could not look upon him, and fell to the ground. The men who were with Daniel did not see the heavenly visitor, but they felt the earth trembling beneath their feet and they ran away in fear.

As Daniel lay on the ground like one dead, the angel came and touched him. Then Daniel rose up on his knees, and the angel spoke. And his voice sounded like a multitude of voices. At first Daniel could not answer, for he had no power of speech left in him. But the angel touched his lips and caused strength to return into his body. And Daniel talked long with his heavenly visitor. And all these things he afterwards wrote in a book.
Daniel was one of the greatest prophets, as well as a great man in the country where he lived. By his courage and trueness to God he caused several heathen kings to respect the religion of the Jews, and he lived to see the time when King Cyrus allowed the Jews to return again to Judah.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

57default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Mon May 26, 2008 10:37 am

Pamela

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The Home-Coming of the Jews
Ezra 1:1 to Ezra 3:7

A GREAT COMPANY of people were gathering in the valley along the Euphrates River, preparing to start on a long journey. There were old people, and young people, and even little boys and girls.


These people were the Jews, and they were arranging soon to start back to the land of their fathers--Judah. For Cyrus, the new king, had sent this message to the Jews scattered everywhere throughout his kingdom:

"The Lord God of heaven was given me all the kingdoms of earth; and he has charged me to build him a house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Now who is there among his people--the Jews--who will go up to Jerusalem and build this house for God?"

Daniel was too old to return on this long journey to Jerusalem. And perhaps the King would have been unwilling to spare this great man from his work. But there were others, many others, who were just as eager as Daniel to see the temple of the Lord rebuilt.

And one of these persons was Zerubbabel, a brave young man who belonged to the family of David. He became the leader of the people who returned to Jerusalem, but he ruled as a prince under the command of King Cyrus; for the throne of David was not restored in Jerusalem again.

When the long journey began, the people moved slowly up the highway that led northward from Babylon, the same highway over which some of them had traveled seventy years before.

Many of them walked, but some rode on horses, others on camels or donkeys. Now they were singing songs of joy, and they were carrying their beautiful harps back to their own land. There they would be glad and there they would play sweet music in the new house of the Lord which Cyrus had commanded them to build.

Cyrus had given them the vessels of gold and of silver which Nebuchadnezzar had stolen from the temple before he set it on fire, and they were taking those vessels back to be used in the new temple.

And Cyrus had commanded their neighbors and friends to give them rich gifts of gold and of silver. So they were well laden for their journey.

Not all the Jews returned to Jerusalem; for many were becoming rich in their new homes, and they did not care to go back to Judah. But they sent precious gifts to help in the building of the new temple. And they were glad because some of their own people were returning to build up the altar of the Lord, which had been torn down.

When at last the long journey was nearing its end, the people came in sight of the crumbled walls of Jerusalem. Some of them remembered how the city looked before it had been destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar, and their hearts where filled with sadness.

But many of them had never seen Jerusalem, for they had been born in the land of captivity. They had heard their parents tell about the land which God had given to them long ago, and which he had allowed King Nebuchadnezzar to take away from them because they had worshiped idols. And they were glad to come back and build homes in that land which Nebuchadnezzar had taken away from them.

In the ruins of Jerusalem the people found the place where the temple of the Lord used to stand. They found the rock where the altar of the Lord had been built. And here the priests and the Levites cleared away the rubbish and gathered stones to build a new altar.
Then they began to offer sacrifices to God each morning and each evening, just as the law of Moses commanded them to do.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

58default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Tue May 27, 2008 8:04 am

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How the New Temple was Built in Jerusalem
Ezra 3:7 to 6:22; Haggai 1,2
WHEN ZERUBBABEL AND his company came to Jerusalem they did not begin at once to rebuild the temple of the Lord. Winter was coming on, and first they built houses for themselves. But at the return of springtime they set to work at the great task that had brought them back to Judah.


Zerubbabel and Jeshua, the high priest, hired carpenters and masons for the new building, and put to work every man among their number who was twenty years old or more. Again they sent to the Lebanon Mountains for wood to use in the building, for Cyrus the king had given them permission to do this.

When everything was ready, the workers laid the foundation of the new temple. And the priests and Levites and singers stood ready with their trumpets and musical instruments to worship the Lord. They sang together, giving praise to God. And all the people stood near by, rejoicing because the great work was so well begun. They shouted with a loud noise.

But some among them had seen the temple which Solomon had built, and when they saw the foundation of this new building they remembered how beautiful the first temple had been. Instead of shouting with joy they wept for sorrow.

There were strangers living in the country places near Jerusalem who were not Jews. When they saw the work that the Jews had commenced at Jerusalem, they asked permission to help in the building of the temple; they said, "We seek your God, as you do."

But Zerubbabel and Jeshua, the high priest, knew these men did not worship God in the right way, and they would not accept help form them.

These strangers were Samaritans, the people who came to live in Israel after the northern tribes were carried away into captivity. These were the people who had mixed religion--a mixture of the true religion and idol-worship. When Zerubbabel and Jeshua refused to let them help build the temple they grew angry and tried to hinder the work.

They sent letters back to the king of Persia, accusing the Jews of falsehoods, and they continued to do this for a long time. Finally they caused the building of the temple to come to a standstill.

Several years passed by, and the Jews were not allowed to finish the temple. So they build comfortable homes for themselves and began to work in the fields near Jerusalem.

Finally God caused the new king of Persia, another king named Darius, to be friendly toward the Jews. But the Jews did not ask him to help them. They did not try to finish the work which they had begun on the temple. So God sent a prophet, named Haggai, to urge them to get at work again on the temple. This prophet said that Zerubbabel had begun the new temple, and he should finish the building of it.

So Zerubbabel and Jeshua took courage and began once more on the temple-building. When they commenced work the Samaritans came down to see what they were doing.

They asked, "Who had given you orders to do this?"

And they answered, "Cyrus, the king of Persia, commanded us to build this house of God."

The Samaritans did not believe their words, and they wrote a letter to King Darius, telling what the Jews had said. But when Darius looked in the records that had been kept during the rule of Cyrus he found that Cyrus had indeed commanded the Jews to rebuild the temple. So he sent word back to the Samaritans, telling them not to hinder the Jews, but rather to give them money to help hurry on the great work which Cyrus had commanded them to do.

And he said that if they refused to obey his words their own houses should be torn down and they should be killed. This message caused the Samaritans to become afraid, and they ceased to hinder the Jews.
When the temple was finally completed, the Jews had a great feast, and they offered many sacrifices to the Lord. They rejoiced very much because God had given them a friend in the new king of Persia, and had helped them to overcome the wicked plans of their neighbors, the Samaritans.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

59default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Wed May 28, 2008 6:58 am

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Wednesday May 28, 2008
"This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope."-Lamentations 3:21

Memory is frequently the bondslave of despondency. Despairing minds call to remembrance every dark foreboding in the past, and dilate upon every gloomy feature in the present; thus memory, clothed in sackcloth, presents to the mind a cup of mingled gall and wormwood. There is, however, no necessity for this. Wisdom can readily transform memory into an angel of comfort. That same recollection which in its left hand brings so many gloomy omens, may be trained to bear in its right a wealth of hopeful signs. She need not wear a crown of iron, she may encircle her brow with a fillet of gold, all spangled with stars. Thus it was in Jeremiah's experience: in the previous verse memory had brought him to deep humiliation of soul: "My soul hath them still in remembrance, and is humbled in me"; and now this same memory restored him to life and comfort. "This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope." Like a two-edged sword, his memory first killed his pride with one edge, and then slew his despair with the other. As a general principle, if we would exercise our memories more wisely, we might, in our very darkest distress, strike a match which would instantaneously kindle the lamp of comfort. There is no need for God to create a new thing upon the earth in order to restore believers to joy; if they would prayerfully rake the ashes of the past, they would find light for the present; and if they would turn to the book of truth and the throne of grace, their candle would soon shine as aforetime. Be it ours to remember the lovingkindness of the Lord, and to rehearse His deeds of grace. Let us open the volume of recollection which is so richly illuminated with memorials of mercy, and we shall soon be happy. Thus memory may be, as Coleridge calls it, "the bosom-spring of joy," and when the Divine Comforter bends it to His service, it may be chief among earthly comforters.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

60default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Thu May 29, 2008 7:57 am

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Thursday May 29, 2008
"Cursed be the man before the Lord, that riseth up and buildeth this city Jericho."-Joshua 6:26

Since he was cursed who rebuilt Jericho, I much more the man who labours to restore Popery among us. In our fathers' days the gigantic walls of Popery fell by the power of their faith, the perseverance of their efforts, and the blast of their gospel trumpets; and now there are some who would rebuild that accursed system upon its old foundation. O Lord, be pleased to thwart their unrighteous endeavours, and pull down every stone which they build. It should be a serious business with us to be thoroughly purged of every error which may have a tendency to foster the spirit of Popery, and when we have made a clean sweep at home we should seek in every way to oppose its all too rapid spread abroad in the church and in the world. This last can be done in secret by fervent prayer, and in public by decided testimony. We must warn with judicious boldness those who are inclined towards the errors of Rome; we must instruct the young in gospel truth, and tell them of the black doings of Popery in the olden times. We must aid in spreading the light more thoroughly through the land, for priests, like owls, hate daylight. Are we doing all we can for Jesus and the gospel? If not, our negligence plays into the hands of the priestcraft. What are we doing to spread the Bible, which is the Pope's bane and poison? Are we casting abroad good, sound gospel writings? Luther once said, "The devil hates goose quills" and, doubtless, he has good reason, for ready writers, by the Holy Spirit's blessing, have done his kingdom much damage. If the thousands who will read this short word this night will do all they can to hinder the rebuilding of this accursed Jericho, the Lord's glory shall speed among the sons of men. Reader, what can you do? What will you do?


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

61default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Fri May 30, 2008 7:46 am

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Friday May 30, 2008
"That henceforth we should not serve sin."-Romans 6:6

Christian, what hast thou to do with sin? Hath it not cost thee enough already? Burnt child, wilt thou play with the fire? What! when thou hast already been between the jaws of the lion, wilt thou step a second time into his den? Hast thou not had enough of the old serpent? Did he not poison all thy veins once, and wilt thou play upon the hole of the asp, and put thy hand upon the cockatrice's den a second time? Oh, be not so mad! so foolish! Did sin ever yield thee real pleasure? Didst thou find solid satisfaction in it? If so, go back to thine old drudgery, and wear the chain again, if it delight thee. But inasmuch as sin did never give thee what it promised to bestow, but deluded thee with lies, be not a second time snared by the old fowler-be free, and let the remembrance of thy ancient bondage forbid thee to enter the net again! It is contrary to the designs of eternal love, which all have an eye to thy purity and holiness; therefore run not counter to the purposes of thy Lord. Another thought should restrain thee from sin. Christians can never sin cheaply; they pay a heavy price for iniquity. Transgression destroys peace of mind, obscures fellowship with Jesus, hinders prayer, brings darkness over the soul; therefore be not the serf and bondman of sin. There is yet a higher argument: each time you "serve sin" you have "Crucified the Lord afresh, and put Him to an open shame." Can you bear that thought? Oh! if you have fallen into any special sin during this day, it may be my Master has sent this admonition this evening, to bring you back before you have backslidden very far. Turn thee to Jesus anew; He has not forgotten His love to thee; His grace is still the same. With weeping and repentance, come thou to His footstool, and thou shalt be once more received into His heart; thou shalt be set upon a rock again, and thy goings shall be established.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

62default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Sat May 31, 2008 9:41 am

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Saturday May 31, 2008
"Who healeth all thy diseases."-Psalm 103:3

Humbling as is the statement, yet the fact is certain, that we are all more or less suffering under the disease of sin. What a comfort to know that we have a great Physician who is both able and willing to heal us! Let us think of Him awhile to-night. His cures are very speedy-there is life in a look at Him; His cures are radical-He strikes at the centre of the disease; and hence, His cures are sure and certain. He never fails, and the disease never returns. There is no relapse where Christ heals; no fear that His patients should be merely patched up for a season, He makes new men of them: a new heart also does He give them, and a right spirit does He put with them. He is well skilled in all diseases. Physicians generally have some specialite. Although they may know a little about almost all our pains and ills, there is usually one disease which they have studied above all others; but Jesus Christ is thoroughly acquainted with the whole of human nature. He is as much at home with one sinner as with another, and never yet did He meet with an out-of-the-way case that was difficult to Him. He has had extraordinary complications of strange diseases to deal with, but He has known exactly with one glance of His eye how to treat the patient. He is the only universal doctor; and the medicine He gives is the only true catholicon, healing in every instance. Whatever our spiritual malady may be, we should apply at once to this Divine Physician. There is no brokenness of heart which Jesus cannot bind up. "His blood cleanseth from all sin." We have but to think of the myriads who have been delivered from all sorts of diseases through the power and virtue of His touch, and we shall joyfully put ourselves in His hands. We trust Him, and sin dies; we love Him, and grace lives; we wait for Him and grace is strengthened; we see Him as he is, and grace is perfected for ever.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

63default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Mon Jun 02, 2008 9:29 am

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Monday June 2, 2008
"Good Master."-Matthew 19:16

If the young man in the gospel used this title in speaking to our Lord, how much more fitly may I thus address Him! He is indeed my Master in both senses, a ruling Master and a teaching Master. I delight to run upon His errands, and to sit at His feet. I am both His servant and His disciple, and count it my highest honour to own the double character. If He should ask me why I call Him "good," I should have a ready answer. It is true that "there is none good but one, that is, God," but then He is God, and all the goodness of Deity shines forth in Him. In my experience, I have found Him good, so good, indeed, that all the good I have has come to me through Him. He was good to me when I was dead in sin, for He raised me by His Spirit's power; He has been good to me in all my needs, trials, struggles, and sorrows. Never could there be a better Master, for His service is freedom, His rule is love: I wish I were one thousandth part as good a servant. When He teaches me as my Rabbi, He is unspeakably good, His doctrine is divine, His manner is condescending, His spirit is gentleness itself. No error mingles with His instruction-pure is the golden truth which He brings forth, and all His teachings lead to goodness, sanctifying as well as edifying the disciple. Angels find Him a good Master and delight to pay their homage at His footstool. The ancient saints proved Him to be a good Master, and each of them rejoiced to sing, "I am Thy servant, O Lord!" My own humble testimony must certainly be to the same effect. I will bear this witness before my friends and neighbours, for possibly they may be led by my testimony to seek my Lord Jesus as their Master. O that they would do so! They would never repent so wise a deed. If they would but take His easy yoke, they would find themselves in so royal a service that they would enlist in it for ever.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

64default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Wed Jun 04, 2008 9:59 am

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Wednesday June 4, 2008
"Received up into glory."-1 Timothy 3:16

We have seen our well-beloved Lord in the days of His flesh, humiliated and sore vexed; for He was "despised and rejected of men, a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief." He whose brightness is as the morning, wore the sackcloth of sorrow as His daily dress: shame was His mantle, and reproach was His vesture. Yet now, inasmuch as He has triumphed over all the powers of darkness upon the bloody tree, our faith beholds our King returning with dyed garments from Edom, robed in the splendour of victory. How glorious must He have been in the eyes of seraphs, when a cloud received Him out of mortal sight, and He ascended up to heaven! Now He wears the glory which He had with God or ever the earth was, and yet another glory above all-that which He has well earned in the fight against sin, death, and hell. As victor He wears the illustrious crown. Hark how the song swells high! It is a new and sweeter song: "Worthy is the Lamb that was slain, for He hath redeemed us unto God by His blood!" He wears the glory of an Intercessor who can never fail, of a Prince who can never be defeated, of a Conqueror who has vanquished every foe, of a Lord who has the heart's allegiance of every subject. Jesus wears all the glory which the pomp of heaven can bestow upon Him, which ten thousand times ten thousand angels can minister to Him. You cannot with your utmost stretch of imagination conceive His exceeding greatness; yet there will be a further revelation of it when He shall descend from heaven in great power, with all the holy angels-"Then shall He sit upon the throne of His glory." Oh, the splendour of that glory! It will ravish His people's hearts. Nor is this the close, for eternity shall sound His praise, "Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever!" Reader, if you would joy in Christ's glory hereafter, He must be glorious in your sight now. Is He so?


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

65default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Thu Jun 05, 2008 10:27 am

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Thursday June 5, 2008
"He that loveth not knoweth not God."-1 John 4:8

The distinguishing mark of a Christian is his confidence in the love of Christ, and the yielding of his affections to Christ in return. First, faith sets her seal upon the man by enabling the soul to say with the apostle, "Christ loved me and gave Himself for me." Then love gives the countersign, and stamps upon the heart gratitude and love to Jesus in return. "We love Him because He first loved us." In those grand old ages, which are the heroic period of the Christian religion, this double mark was clearly to be seen in all believers in Jesus; they were men who knew the love of Christ, and rested upon it as a man leaneth upon a staff whose trustiness he has tried. The love which they felt towards the Lord was not a quiet emotion which they hid within themselves in the secret chamber of their souls, and which they only spake of in their private assemblies when they met on the first day of the week, and sang hymns in honour of Christ Jesus the crucified, but it was a passion with them of such a vehement and all-consuming energy, that it was visible in all their actions, spoke in their common talk, and looked out of their eyes even in their commonest glances. Love to Jesus was a flame which fed upon the core and heart of their being; and, therefore, from its own force burned its way into the outer man, and shone there. Zeal for the glory of King Jesus was the seal and mark of all genuine Christians. Because of their dependence upon Christ's love they dared much, and because of their love to Christ they did much, and it is the same now. The children of God are ruled in their inmost powers by love-the love of Christ constraineth them; they rejoice that divine love is set upon them, they feel it shed abroad in their hearts by the Holy Ghost, which is given unto them, and then by force of gratitude they love the Saviour with a pure heart, fervently. My reader, do you love Him? Ere you sleep give an honest answer to a weighty question!


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

66default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Fri Jun 06, 2008 12:02 pm

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Friday June 6, 2008
"Are they Israelites? so am I."-2 Corinthians 11:22

We have here A PERSONAL CLAIM, and one that needs proof. The apostle knew that His claim was indisputable, but there are many persons who have no right to the title who yet claim to belong to the Israel of God. If we are with confidence declaring, "So am I also an Israelite," let us only say it after having searched our heart as in the presence of God. But if we can give proof that we are following Jesus, if we can from the heart say, "I trust Him wholly, trust Him only, trust Him simply, trust Him now, and trust Him ever," then the position which the saints of God hold belongs to us-all their enjoyments are our possessions; we may be the very least in Israel, "less than the least of all saints," yet since the mercies of God belong to the saints AS SAINTS, and not as advanced saints, or well-taught saints, we may put in our plea, and say, "Are they Israelites? so am I; therefore the promises are mine, grace is mine, glory will be mine." The claim, rightfully made, is one which will yield untold comfort. When God's people are rejoicing that they are His, what a happiness if they can say, "So AM I!" When they speak of being pardoned, and justified, and accepted in the Beloved, how joyful to respond, "Through the grace of God, SO AM I." But this claim not only has its enjoyments and privileges, but also its conditions and duties. We must share with God's people in cloud as well as in sunshine. When we hear them spoken of with contempt and ridicule for being Christians, we must come boldly forward and say, "So am I." When we see them working for Christ, giving their time, their talent, their whole heart to Jesus, we must be able to say, "So do I." O let us prove our gratitude by our devotion, and live as those who, having claimed a privilege, are willing to take the responsibility connected with it.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

67default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Mon Jun 09, 2008 10:36 am

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Monday June 9, 2008
"Search the Scriptures."-John 5:39

The Greek word here rendered search signifies a strict, close, diligent, curious search, such as men make when they are seeking gold, or hunters when they are in earnest after game. We must not rest content with having given a superficial reading to a chapter or two, but with the candle of the Spirit we must deliberately seek out the hidden meaning of the word. Holy Scripture requires searching-much of it can only be learned by careful study. There is milk for babes, but also meat for strong men. The rabbis wisely say that a mountain of matter hangs upon every word, yea, upon every title of Scripture. Tertullian exclaims, "I adore the fulness of the Scriptures." No man who merely skims the book of God can profit thereby; we must dig and mine until we obtain the hid treasure. The door of the word only opens to the key of diligence. The Scriptures claim searching. They are the writings of God, bearing the divine stamp and imprimatur- who shall dare to treat them with levity? He who despises them despises the God who wrote them. God forbid that any of us should leave our Bibles to become swift witnesses against us in the great day of account. The word of God will repay searching. God does not bid us sift a mountain of chaff with here and there a grain of wheat in it, but the Bible is winnowed corn-we have but to open the granary door and find it. Scripture grows upon the student. It is full of surprises. Under the teaching of the Holy Spirit, to the searching eye it glows with splendour of revelation, like a vast temple paved with wrought gold, and roofed with rubies, emeralds, and all manner of gems. No merchandise like the merchandise of Scripture truth. Lastly, the Scriptures reveal Jesus: "They are they which testify of Me." No more powerful motive can be urged upon Bible readers than this: he who finds Jesus finds life, heaven, all things. Happy he who, searching his Bible, discovers his Saviour.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

68default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Wed Jun 11, 2008 3:44 pm

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Wednesday June 11, 2008
"There brake He the arrows of the bow, the shield, and the sword, and the battle."-Psalm 76:3

Our Redeemer's glorious cry of "It is finished," was the death-knell of all the adversaries of His people, the breaking of "the and the battle." Behold the hero of Golgotha using His cross as an anvil, and His woes as a hammer, dashing to shivers bundle after bundle of our sins, those poisoned "arrows of the bow"; trampling on every indictment, and destroying every accusation. What glorious blows the mighty Breaker gives with a hammer far more ponderous than the fabled weapon of Thor! How the diabolical darts fly to fragments, and the infernal bucklers are broken like potters' vessels! Behold, He draws from its sheath of hellish workmanship the dread sword of Satanic power! He snaps it across His knee, as a man breaks the dry wood of a fagot, and casts it into the fire. Beloved, no sin of a believer can now be an arrow mortally to wound him, no condemnation can now be a sword to kill him, for the punishment of our sin was borne by Christ, a full atonement was made for all our iniquities by our blessed Substitute and Surety. Who now accuseth? Who now condemneth? Christ hath died, yea rather, hath risen again. Jesus has emptied the quivers of hell, has quenched every fiery dart, and broken off the head of every arrow of wrath; the ground is strewn with the splinters and relics of the weapons of hell's warfare, which are only visible to us to remind us of our former danger, and of our great deliverance. Sin hath no more dominion over us. Jesus has made an end of it, and put it away for ever. O thou enemy, destructions are come to a perpetual end. Talk ye of all the wondrous works of the Lord, ye who make mention of His name, keep not silence, neither by day, nor when the sun goeth to his rest. Bless the Lord, O my soul.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

69default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Thu Jun 12, 2008 8:58 am

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Thursday June 12, 2008
"Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling."-2 Timothy 1:9

The apostle uses the perfect tense and says, "Who hath saved us." Believers in Christ Jesus are saved. They are not looked upon as persons who are in a hopeful state, and may ultimately be saved, but they are already saved. Salvation is not a blessing to be enjoyed upon the dying bed, and to be sung of in a future state above, but a matter to be obtained, received, promised, and enjoyed now. The Christian is perfectly saved in God's purpose; God has ordained him unto salvation, and that purpose is complete. He is saved also as to the price which has been paid for him: "It is finished" was the cry of the Saviour ere He died. The believer is also perfectly saved in His covenant head, for as he fell in Adam, so he lives in Christ. This complete salvation is accompanied by a holy calling. Those whom the Saviour saved upon the cross are in due time effectually called by the power of God the Holy Spirit unto holiness: they leave their sins; they endeavour to be like Christ; they choose holiness, not out of any compulsion, but from the stress of a new nature, which leads them to rejoice in holiness just as naturally as aforetime they delighted in sin. God neither chose them nor called them because they were holy, but He called them that they might be holy, and holiness is the beauty produced by His workmanship in them. The excellencies which we see in a believer are as much the work of God as the atonement itself. Thus is brought out very sweetly the fulness of the grace of God. Salvation must be of grace, because the Lord is the author of it: and what motive but grace could move Him to save the guilty? Salvation must be of grace, because the Lord works in such a manner that our righteousness is for ever excluded. Such is the believer's privilege-a present salvation; such is the evidence that he is called to it-a holy life.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

70default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Sun Jun 15, 2008 9:35 pm

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C.H. Spurgeon's Morning Devotional
Monday June 16, 2008
"And I give unto them eternal life, and they shall never perish."-John 10:28

The Christian should never think or speak lightly of unbelief. For a child of God to mistrust His love, His truth, His faithfulness, must be greatly displeasing to Him. How can we ever grieve Him by doubting His upholding grace? Christian! it is contrary to every promise of God's precious Word that thou shouldst ever be forgotten or left to perish. If it could be so, how could He be true who has said, "Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? Yea, they may forget, yet will I never forget thee." What were the value of that promise-"The mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but My kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of My peace be removed, saith the Lord that hath mercy on thee." Where were the truth of Christ's words-"I give unto My sheep eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand. My Father, which gave them Me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of My Father's hand." Where were the doctrines of grace? They would be all disproved if one child of God should perish. Where were the veracity of God, His honour, His power, His grace, His covenant, His oath, if any of those for whom Christ has died, and who have put their trust in Him, should nevertheless be cast away? Banish those unbelieving fears which so dishonour God. Arise, shake thyself from the dust, and put on thy beautiful garments. Remember it is sinful to doubt His Word wherein He has promised thee that thou shalt never perish. Let the eternal life within thee express itself in confident rejoicing.

"The gospel bears my spirit up:
A faithful and unchanging God
Lays the foundation for my hope,
In oaths, and promises, and blood."


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

71default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Tue Jun 17, 2008 8:18 am

Pamela

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Tuesday June 17, 2008
"Then Israel sang this song, Spring up, O well; sing ye unto it."-Numbers 21:17

Famous was the well of Beer in the wilderness, because it was the subject of a promise: "That is the well whereof the Lord spake unto Moses, Gather the people together, and I will give them water." The people needed water, and it was promised by their gracious God. We need fresh supplies of heavenly grace, and in the covenant the Lord has pledged Himself to give all we require. The well next became the cause of a song. Before the water gushed forth, cheerful faith prompted the people to sing; and as they saw the crystal fount bubbling up, the music grew yet more joyous. In like manner, we who believe the promise of God should rejoice in the prospect of divine revivals in our souls, and as we experience them our holy joy should overflow. Are we thirsting? Let us not murmur, but sing. Spiritual thirst is bitter to bear, but we need not bear it-the promise indicates a well; let us be of good heart, and look for it. Moreover, the well was the centre of prayer. "Spring up, O well." What God has engaged to give, we must enquire after, or we manifest that we have neither desire nor faith. This evening let us ask that the Scripture we have read, and our devotional exercises, may not be an empty formality, but a channel of grace to our souls. O that God the Holy Spirit would work in us with all His mighty power, filling us with all the fulness of God. Lastly, the well was the object of effort. "The nobles of the people digged it with their staves." The Lord would have us active in obtaining grace. Our staves are ill adapted for digging in the sand, but we must use them to the utmost of our ability. Prayer must not be neglected; the assembling of ourselves together must not be forsaken; ordinances must not be slighted. The Lord will give us His peace most plenteously, but not in a way of idleness. Let us, then, bestir ourselves to seek Him in whom are all our fresh springs.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

72default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Tue Jun 24, 2008 7:35 am

Pamela

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Tuesday June 24, 2008
"Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said . . . Be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods."-Daniel 3:16, 18

The narrative of the manly courage and marvellous deliverance of the three holy children, or rather champions, is well calculated to excite in the minds of believers firmness and steadfastness in upholding the truth in the teeth of tyranny and in the very jaws of death. Let young Christians especially learn from their example, both in matters of faith in religion, and matters of uprightness in business, never to sacrifice their consciences. Lose all rather than lose your integrity, and when all else is gone, still hold fast a clear conscience as the rarest jewel which can adorn the bosom of a mortal. Be not guided by the will-o'-the-wisp of policy, but by the pole-star of divine authority. Follow the right at all hazards. When you see no present advantage, walk by faith and not by sight. Do God the honour to trust Him when it comes to matters of loss for the sake of principle. See whether He will be your debtor! See if He doth not even in this life prove His word that "Godliness, with contentment, is great gain," and that they who "seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, shall have all these things added unto them." Should it happen that, in the providence of God, you are a loser by conscience, you shall find that if the Lord pays you not back in the silver of earthly prosperity, He will discharge His promise in the gold of spiritual joy. Remember that a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of that which he possesseth. To wear a guileless spirit, to have a heart void of offence, to have the favour and smile of God, is greater riches than the mines of Ophir could yield, or the traffic of Tyre could win. "Better is a dinner of herbs where love is, than a stalled ox and inward contention therewith." An ounce of heart's-ease is worth a ton of gold.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

73default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Fri Jun 27, 2008 10:02 am

Pamela

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Friday June 27, 2008
"Let every man abide in the same calling wherein he was called."-1 Corinthians 7:20

Some persons have the foolish notion that the only way in which they can live for God is by becoming ministers, missionaries, or Bible women. Alas! how many would be shut out from any opportunity of magnifying the Most High if this were the case. Beloved, it is not office, it is earnestness; it is not position, it is grace which will enable us to glorify God. God is most surely glorified in that cobbler's stall, where the godly worker, as he plies the awl, sings of the Saviour's love, ay, glorified far more than in many a prebendal stall where official religiousness performs its scanty duties. The name of Jesus is glorified by the poor unlearned carter as he drives his horse, and blesses his God, or speaks to his fellow labourer by the roadside, as much as by the popular divine who, throughout the country, like Boanerges, is thundering out the gospel. God is glorified by our serving Him in our proper vocations. Take care, dear reader, that you do not forsake the path of duty by leaving your occupation, and take care you do not dishonour your profession while in it. Think little of yourselves, but do not think too little of your callings. Every lawful trade may be sanctified by the gospel to noblest ends. Turn to the Bible, and you will find the most menial forms of labour connected either with most daring deeds of faith, or with persons whose lives have been illustrious for holiness. Therefore be not discontented with your calling. Whatever God has made your position, or your work, abide in that, unless you are quite sure that he calls you to something else. Let your first care be to glorify God to the utmost of your power where you are. Fill your present sphere to His praise, and if He needs you in another He will show it you. This evening lay aside vexatious ambition, and embrace peaceful content.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

74default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Tue Jul 01, 2008 3:56 pm

Pamela

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Tuesday July 1, 2008
"The voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day."-Genesis 3:8

My soul, now that the cool of the day has come, retire awhile and hearken to the voice of thy God. He is always ready to speak with thee when thou art prepared to hear. If there be any slowness to commune it is not on His part, but altogether on thine own, for He stands at the door and knocks, and if His people will but open He rejoices to enter. But in what state is my heart, which is my Lord's garden? May I venture to hope that it is well trimmed and watered, and is bringing forth fruit fit for Him? If not, He will have much to reprove, but still I pray Him to come unto me, for nothing can so certainly bring my heart into a right condition as the presence of the Sun of Righteousness, who brings healing in His wings. Come, therefore, O Lord, my God, my soul invites Thee earnestly, and waits for Thee eagerly. Come to me, O Jesus, my well-beloved, and plant fresh flowers in my garden, such as I see blooming in such perfection in Thy matchless character! Come, O my Father, who art the Husbandman, and deal with me in Thy tenderness and prudence! Come, O Holy Spirit, and bedew my whole nature, as the herbs are now moistened with the evening dews. O that God would speak to me. Speak, Lord, for Thy servant heareth! O that He would walk with me; I am ready to give up my whole heart and mind to Him, and every other thought is hushed. I am only asking what He delights to give. I am sure that He will condescend to have fellowship with me, for He has given me His Holy Spirit to abide with me for ever. Sweet is the cool twilight, when every star seems like the eye of heaven, and the cool wind is as the breath of celestial love. My Father, my elder Brother, my sweet Comforter, speak now in lovingkindness, for Thou hast opened mine ear and I am not rebellious.


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

75default Re: This Mornings Meditation on Sat Jul 12, 2008 10:26 am

Pamela

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C.H. Spurgeon's Evening Devotional
Saturday July 12, 2008
"His heavenly kingdom."-2 Timothy 4:18

Yonder city of the great King is a place of active service. Ransomed spirits serve Him day and night in His temple. They never cease to fulfil the good pleasure of their King. They always "rest," so far as ease and freedom from care is concerned; and never "rest," in the sense of indolence or inactivity. Jerusalem the golden is the place of communion with all the people of God. We shall sit with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, in eternal fellowship. We shall hold high converse with the noble host of the elect, all reigning with Him who by His love and His potent arm has brought them safely home. We shall not sing solos, but in chorus shall we praise our King. Heaven is a place of victory realized. Whenever, Christian, thou hast achieved a victory over thy lusts-whenever after hard struggling, thou hast laid a temptation dead at thy feet-thou hast in that hour a foretaste of the joy that awaits thee when the Lord shall shortly tread Satan under thy feet, and thou shalt find thyself more than conqueror through Him who hath loved thee. Paradise is a place of security. When you enjoy the full assurance of faith, you have the pledge of that glorious security which shall be yours when you are a perfect citizen of the heavenly Jerusalem. O my sweet home, Jerusalem, thou happy harbour of my soul! Thanks, even now, to Him whose love hath taught me to long for Thee; but louder thanks in eternity, when I shall possess thee.

"My soul has tasted of the grapes,
And now it longs to go
Where my dear Lord His vineyard keeps
And all the clusters grow.

"Upon the true and living vine,
My famish'd soul would feast,
And banquet on the fruit divine,
An everlasting guest."


_________________
I am nothing without Him. For He is my Savior and my light.
He brings me to a land of promise and flourishes my generations. He keeps me from harm and wakes my sleeping eyes.
For more information on A Walk Toward Jesus go to www.awtj.org
http://awtj.webs.com

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